Human Rights Activist, Mike Ozekhome SAN, has demanded the unconditional release of the leader of Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kano, predicting that his detention will worsen insecurity in the South eastern part of Nigeria.
Recall that Kanu who was charged with treasonable felony, terrorism and other related offences, is being detained in Department Security of Service (DSS) custody in Abuja, after he fled Nigeria, rearrested and deported to face his trial in 2021.
The constitutional Lawyer made the appeal at the 11th Zik Lecture Series held on Thursday at Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State.
Mr. Anthony Eri said this in a statement which emanated from the Office of the Press Secretary, Anambra State, recalled how the Nigerian military invaded the residence of the separatist leader, while “about 20 lives were lost in the tragic incidence”.
According to Ozekhome who spoke on the theme: “Nigeria in the Throes of Insecurity Towards 2023: Any Panacea?”, said, “Nnamdi Kanu is not a separatist, he is fighting a self determination course which is globally recognized.
“IPOB didn’t start the violence. It was peaceful until September 14 when the Nigerian Army known as the “Operation Python Dance” invaded Kanu’s home.
“Mazi Kanu lost his parents and over 20 lives were lost in the tragic incidence. Let me seize this opportunity to beg Mr. President, on bended knees, without prejudice, to release Nnamdi Kanu. We’re not saying he should subvert justice. What will bring peace to the region is not his continued detention”, Ozekhome said.
Ozekhome who was the Guest speaker, however suggested that Nigeria should consider running a unicameral National Assembly rather than bicameral or have members sit on part time basis, after which they receive sitting allowances.
Anambra State governor, Charles Soludo, represented by his deputy, Gilbert Ibezim, assured that the Zik Mausoleum in Onitsha have been completed to honour the legacies of the great Zik, stressing that his government is doing all it can to immortalize Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe; a great Igbo son and icon who was one of the founding fathers of Nigeria.
The Governor who lamented that the present generation is deviating from the principles of Dr. Azikiwe, pointed out that Zik stood for strength in unity, democracy and freedom of speech.
He advised ndi Anambra and Nigerians to look at and hold on to their diverse strength within.
Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, Governor of Delta State and Vice Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP who chaired the dialogue, top the list of dignitaries including Chief of Staff to Governor Soludo, Mr. Ernest Ezeajughi, former Chief of General Staff, Commodore Ebitu Ukiwe, the Anglican Bishop of Awka and Archbishop of Niger Province, the Most Rev. Alexander Ibezim, Chairman of South East Traditional Rulers’ Council and Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Nnaemeka Achebe, Traditional Ruler of Awka, Obi Gibson Nwosu who graced the occasion.
TheNewspad reports that Zik lecture series initiative was conceived in 2006 by Senator Ben Ndi Obi, to immortalize the good works of Nigeria’s foremost nationalist, statesman and pan-Africanist, Nnamdi Azikiwe, first President, and first Indigenous Governor-General of Nigeria.